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Sandra Krakoff

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“…More than a Memory, She is a Living Presence in our Lives and That of Others” 


On Friday, November 5, 2021, Sandra Gusky Krakoff of Palm Beach, FL and Boston, MA passed quietly just after sunset surrounded by her three children. She will always be remembered for her fierce independence, her courage, strength, and force of will which she always used to lift up those in need. Born November 27, 1937 to Jack and Helen Recht Gusky in Pittsburgh, PA, she met the love of her life, Robert L. Krakoff, at Taylor Allderdice High School. Sandy was truly a pioneer of her generation regularly breaking glass ceilings in both her professional and personal life.

Sandy received a Bachelor degree in Journalism and Advertising from the Pennsylvania State University in 1958.  She was the first in her family to attend college.  Graduating in just 3 years, she married Robert Krakoff in 1959.  She always sought to uphold the great Jewish tradition of tikkun olam, “repairing the world.” Her legacy began with the support and advancement of her family, children, and grandchildren. She always strove to better the lives of others with her investment in community and commitment to fighting the scourge of cancer.

Her drive to constantly improve oneself was central to her life, but she also embraced the beauty of the world around her. She not only studied art and design at Penn State, but Sandy stood out as a true style icon and arbiter of taste.  She exemplified a life of: “if you can dream it, you can be it.” In her 50 years with Bob Krakoff, she built a partnership, family, and career that spanned the heyday of motor city to traveling the world with Trans World Airlines. A supporter of the arts and collector, Sandy supported the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, FL.

Supporting her husband Bob through Harvard Business School (‘59), she began her long string of professional firsts working as an office assistant for one of the world’s earliest mainframe companies in Boston. While raising three children in Fairfield County, CT in her position as Director of Public Relations for the local YMCA, she secured the building of a community pool that became the centerpiece of the Westport, CT community and was enjoyed by her own grandson some 25 years later. After receiving a Certificate in Personnel Administration from Fairfield University, she was tapped to become the Managing Director of Katherine Gibbs School in Norwalk, CT in 1983. Sandy managed to uplift a minor secretarial program for women from low-income backgrounds to a noted professional school.

Her success led her upon relocation to Boston in 1986 to the firm, Alan R. Stone, Esq., as senior attorney placement consultant. She built a renowned, professional practice for paralegal placement. Sandra was listed as a noteworthy personnel consultant by Marquis Who’s Who. Alan R. Stone was successfully sold in 1999, whereupon Sandy was able to launch serious advances in her philanthropic work.

Sandy redefined the philanthropic landscape by not only leading by example but leveraging the power of community and relationships. As a consequence, she was honored by many organizations over the years, from the Big Sisters of Boston to 2017 Woman of the Year for the Greater Palm Beach Jewish Women’s Foundation. Some of her most notable work besides orchestrating galas for the American Cancer Society and American Heart Association was the founding and co-founding respectively of chapters in Palm Beach and Boston of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. She was also a member of the Board of the MorseLife Health System in West Palm Beach, FL. Most recently, she has been a member of the executive leadership council for the Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Massachusetts Eye and Ear Institute.

Sandy is survived by her three children (Roger, Hope, and Reed) and seven grandchildren (Alexandra, Justin, Helen, Sophie, Lily, Oscar, and Maude). Her Yorkie rescue, Bijou, will miss her greatly.  A public memorial service in her honor will be held on Friday, November 12 at 11am, Temple Israel, 477 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA 02215. Parking preferred on the Riverway.


Please honor Sandy by contributing to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, or

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute,



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